Ashley Morrison's Blog

October 9, 2016

By the lake.

Filed under: Photography,Travel — Ashley Morrison @ 9:50 am
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Back in February of this year, I was asked by the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland, to quote them a price for me to produce and then provide them with 6 images to use – and so after some negotiating of the fee, we were given the green light to proceed.

So in August, Dianne and I flew over to see them – to talk more about what they actually needed, as well as see their place for ourselves first hand.

A fairly tale castle…
The Trump International Golf Hotel near Balmedie in Scotland.
.. with a huge Scottish flag in front, is how I would best describe it Smile.

Anyway, one of the last shots we looked at when we were there, was this view from the lake at the back…
The lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. which we felt would work well, to show a bride how beautiful their location was, i.e. it would be the ideal setting for her big day.

However, I went on to add in our report…

“Totally weather dependent – so I won’t promise anything here.”

.. as is Scotland after all wink.

Anyway, after lots more talk about what all they needed, last week we headed over to shoot for real – and I had obviously been keeping a close eye on the weather forecast – so instead of starting on the Monday as planned, due to the weather forecast saying Sunday would be good, we pushed ahead and arrived mid-day Sunday, to set-up for this shot…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. which as you can see wasn’t looking to good at this stage.

Still, it wasn’t long before the sun came out, so having asked at the last minute for a flower girl and a bride to be there, Dianne & I tried to work-out their positions…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. but there was one slight problem, we didn’t have a bride or a flower girl cry.

Thankfully however, Dianne had brought a wedding dress over with her – and so before I knew it she was wearing it…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. and was more than happy to stand-in, as some big black clouds started to appear.

But then she disappeared after looking at this image on screen…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. and re-appeared a few minutes with a new bride…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. while I watched the sun go behind a big tree, which as you can see meant they were now in the shadows cry.

So lights up…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. and while Dianne sorted out the dress…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. Claudio played around with the lighting, to see if he could get the balance right to make it look natural.

Anyway, one of the huge advantages of using a digital system, is you can obviously see the results right away on screen – and so with everything now in place…
Setting up the shot by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. it was just a matter of trying out a few different poses – and so this was the final result…
Bride standing by the lake at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. with even a swan swimming past, to complete the the story we were trying to tell to their target market Smile.

So with one in the bag, it was time to take a look at this bathroom…
Bathroom in one of the bedroom suites at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. which we had said in our report, we felt would look good shoot in the evening.

“candles, towels, late evening feel, girl in bathrobe standing at the window or sitting on the edge of the bath.”

Decided to go in a bit tighter…
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. and so with the camera in position, it was time to work on the lighting, styling and positioning of the model..
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. which we checked on screen…
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. while we waited for the sun to set…
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. then checked again and again …
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. before everyone started to smile…
Setting up the shot in the bathroom at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. at this the final result…
Bathroom in one of the bedroom suites at the Trump International Golf Hotel near Aberdeen in Scotland.
.. before we called it a day.

Two done, ten to go – so more to follow, as tomorrow is another day Smile.

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September 8, 2014

The Money Shot.

The Money Shot is like the all important one – which if we get it right, could help the client make a lot of money over the years to come.

Well today I’m going to show one of the first images which made me realist, that what we do, is often more than just turn-up and take some pictures – which then made me realist that charging for just one’s time to take pictures, was all wrong – as that part, is often only a small part of the work involved. Especially when it comes to producing the Money Shots.

Because creating such images can often starts days or even weeks before the shoot – in one’s head – as you plan ahead to insure you get it right on the day.

Anyway, in this case, as I’d already been out to this hotel a few months before to recce it and talk to the marketing people – then that’s really when I started to create the image you will see below.

Which in this case was to be a shot of a bridal couple standing out on the balcony – which as you can see here…
The Redcastle Hotel near the town of Moville on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal.
.. overlooks Lough Foyle.

And this being Ireland, the weather is the one thing you can’t count  on – unless it’s overcast & rain you are counting on, as that’s what it’s most likely to be smile

Having said that, we do get some sunshine and when we do, it can look wonderful – and so in this case the image I had in my head was of the couple standing on the balcony with the sun setting behind them – which I reckoned would look vey romantic – or should I say: that would be the ideal image- to help them sell the dream to any young couple who would be thinking of getting married here.

Anyway, as chance would have it, on the morning of our first day, I woke to see this beautiful sunrise…
Sunrise at the Redcastle Hotel near the town of Moville on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal.
.. so I took a few quick handheld shots of it from my bedroom window.

And then later on, just after breakfast, I took a few more which looked like this…
View from the Redcastle Hotel near the town of Moville on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal.
.. which I also thought may worked as a background – IF when we came to the actual shoot, it just wasn’t what I had been hoping for.

So I was starting to piece the image together hours beforehand – and I’m sure glad I did – because as you can see here…
Setting up the shot.
.. by the time we were ready to shoot, it wasn’t looking so good.

Still, I had this picture in my head – even if it wasn’t in front of me – and so with all the lights set-up and the camera in place, the final touches were added to the bride & groom…
Setting up the shot.
.. by Kathleen & her assistant.

Wasn’t quite as I’d imagine…
Original capture.
.. but by adding a touch of warmth…
Original capture of the Bride & Groom.
.. I reckoned this was as good as it was going to get.

Not exactly a Money Shot I hear you say – but then came the part that nobody sees, which was the image in my head from weeks ago.

Which in this case I did two versions of – this one…
Bride & Groom standing out on the balcony at the Redcastle Hotel near the town of Moville on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal.
.. which I personally loved the look of but knew it may not be right for them – and this one…Bride & Groom standing out on the balcony at the Redcastle Hotel near the town of Moville on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal.
.. which was very close to how I’d pictured it beforehand.

The Money Shot – which I reckoned was worth a lot more to them, than all the other shots we did that week put together – as seen here in this magazine…

The Carlton Hotels ad in the Spring 2006 issue of Northern Irelands Wedding Journal magazine.

(Double page spread ad in the Spring 2006 issue of the Wedding Journal magazine)


.. as well as in almost every other media too, even to this every day…
Screen shot of the wedding page on the Redcastle hotel's website.
.. as seen here on their current web site.

So for all those brides who have asked their photographers to recreate this image over the years – now you know why they struggled to do so – because although it is real, it was only ever real in my head, which was then later created wink

From Marie, Bradley & me at the Redcastle Hotel, on the Inishowen Peninsula of County Donegal, creating images… just for you.

October 22, 2010

Great to see…

.. things are booming in Doonbeg Golf & Spa Resort – as we shoot various stills and rooms – between two weddings that are currently being held here.

Today we focused on attention to detail…
Wedding ideas in the marquee at Doonbeg Golf & Spa Resort
.. and that personal touch
Weddings in the marquee at Doonbeg Golf & Spa Resort
.. which one would naturally expect to receive on the their wedding day, here in the West of Ireland.

So cheers…
Strawberries & champagne.
..from Marie & me.
www.ampimage.com

August 28, 2010

Hectic Harmony…

.. and the series of captures which led up to the final images produced, at the CityNorth Hotel in County Meath this week:

It’s hectic – but shows the amount of work and attention to detail, that goes into each and every image – as we piece it together and work around their guests too.
“Great images don’t just happen” – which is something we would often say to clients – and I feel this video shows what we mean by that.

Music: Hectic Harmony by Musicshake.

Enjoy !

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